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  • Acoustic Monitoring Biologist

    • Employer: The Institute for Bird Populations
      Location: California
      Country: United States
      Last Date to Apply: No value
      Open Until Filled: Yes

    The Institute for Bird Populations (IBP) seeks a biologist to assist with an autonomous recording unit
    (ARU) bird monitoring project at California off-highway vehicle recreation parks and other ARU
    monitoring projects across the US. This is a year-round position that includes archiving and processing
    acoustic data, verifying species on recordings, conducting bird point counts, coordinating with land
    managers and other project partners, deploying and maintaining ARUs, and reporting (including
    opportunity to publish). The successful candidate will have expertise in the identification of birds of the
    western United States, some experience deploying ARUs and processing acoustic data using automated
    methods (using R, Python, or other language), and a willingness to spend much of the spring/summer
    season in the field deploying ARUs and conducting in-person point counts. This is a full-time, salaried
    staff position, with health insurance and other fringe benefits.
    ABOUT IBP: We are an international avian research and conservation organization based in Petaluma,
    California, with staff across the U.S. We enable science-based conservation of species and habitats by
    studying the abundance, demography, and ecology of birds and other wildlife. We collaborate locally,
    nationally, and globally with government agencies, universities, and NGOs to assess the effects of
    climate change, land management actions, and other ecological stressors on bird populations, and
    prescribe practical solutions to conservation challenges. More information is available at
    POSITION DESCRIPTION: This is an opportunity for a biologist particularly interested refining automated
    classification processes for ARU data, so that the results can be employed to better understand bird
    biology and conservation needs. Tasks for the first year of employment will entail establishing protocols
    for processing large amounts of acoustic data, and helping design and implement a variety of ARU
    projects across the west. All of these first-year tasks will be in collaboration with an IBP scientist that is
    already heavily involved in the ARU projects. After initial protocols for acoustic data processing are
    established, the position will focus largely on processing and verifying data collected across various ARU
    projects, including ingesting acoustic recordings for processing, processing recordings using automated
    methods (i.e. BirdNET), verifying a subset of classified recordings manually, and providing summaries of
    results. Other primary responsibilities will include programming ARUs, troubleshooting technical issues
    with ARU deployments, and coordinating shipments of memory devices and ARUs to and from project
    partners. From April through June each year, substantial time will be spent in the field conducting in-
    person bird surveys at off-highway vehicle recreation parks across California. Additional field work and
    travel within California and the western US for deployment of ARUs or conducting point counts for other
    IBP projects may also be required. Housing accommodations will be provided where feasible during
    fieldwork, but some camping will likely be required.
    During the rest of the year the selected candidate may choose to work from IBP’s main office in
    Petaluma, CA or telecommute from elsewhere in California, but proximity to IBP’s office in Petaluma is a

    SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE: The successful candidate will ideally have all or most of the following

    •  Expertise in identification of western birds, especially by sound.
    •  Experience conducting multi-species bird surveys.
    •  Experience working closely with outside collaborators.
    •  High level of physical fitness and ability to work in rugged terrain.
    •  Experience processing bird acoustic data with software tools.
    •  Interest or experience in batch processing of recordings using a local server or cloud service.
    •  Experience with programming in R or Python.
    •  Experience deploying and maintaining Autonomous Recording Units (ARUs).
    •  A sense of humor and a desire to integrate into a friendly, highly collaborative team.
    •  A clean driving record and a personal vehicle that can be driven to field sites (a normal
    • passenger vehicle should be sufficient). Mileage reimbursement for travel to field sites will be
    • provided.

    COMPENSATION: This is a year-round staff position starting at $4,000/month with fringe benefits
    including health insurance.
    START DATE AND HIRING SCHEDULE: Employment will begin in mid-January. Application review will
    begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.
    TO APPLY: Please email a resume, cover letter, and contact information for up to 3 references to Mandy
    Holmgren at: mholmgren AT birdpop DOT org. Please specify ‘Acoustic Monitoring Biologist position’ in
    the Subject line.
    IBP values diversity and encourages people from all backgrounds to apply. All qualified applicants will
    receive consideration regardless of race, religion, sex, gender identity or expression, or sexual

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